Protect the Melon! logo

Thanks to a generous sponsorship from the Morgan County Medical Society and Passavant Area Hospital all fourth graders in the Jacksonville community will receive helmets this year as part of the Protect the Melon! campaign.

The Jacksonville Park Foundation partners with Illinois College Professor Dr. Jeremy Turner in the Protect the Melon! campaign which encourages youth to wear a helmet when biking, roller skating, riding a scooter, skateboarding or any other wheeled activity. Illinois College psychology students help with a lesson on brain health, then everyone gets a helmet.

Links, tips and information on being a Melonhead is available at ic.edu/melonhead.

Illinois College student fits 4th grader with helmet. Photos by Darren Iozia

Illinois College student fits 4th grader with helmet. Photos by Darren Iozia

Dr. Jeremy Turner of Illinois College shows the result of a fall to an unprotected melon.

Dr. Jeremy Turner of Illinois College shows the result of a fall to an unprotected melon.

Student with helmet.

Student with helmet.

Thanks to Darren Iozia Photography for photos of the event. See more images on the Jacksonville Park Foundation – Town Brook Initiative Facebook page.  

 

The Jacksonville Park Foundation is working with the Pilot Club, Helmets First!, the Illinois College Psychology Club and others in the community to fund the program for future years. Contact Foundation President Steve Warmowski via jacksonvilleparkfoundation.com to help.

The Jacksonville Park Foundation focuses on health, recreation and families. Volunteers in the group have started several initiatives to improve the quality of life in the Jacksonville community such as youth health via the Jacksonville Children’s Garden; advocating for a bridge and path at Lake Jacksonville and a Town Brook recreational trail; creation of a new dog park through the Bark Park Initiative; assisting in fundraising for a new disc golf course; and other park enhancements. The foundation is a nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable organization and is solely reliant on private funding.

You can contribute by making a check out to Jacksonville Park Foundation and mailing to Laura Marks/JPF Treasurer, Jacksonville Savings Bank, 1211 W. Morton Ave., Jacksonville, IL 62650.

Note: due to end-of-semester scheduling issues not all 4th graders received helmets in the spring campaign. We will work with schools to hand out the remaining helmets when school is back in session next month.

Link to initial story.

The City of Jacksonville will be hosting a Bark for your Park Community Results Party on the Square, Friday the 31st of July, starting at 1:45pm. Say you’re coming and get updates via the Bark Park announce Facebook event page.

DOGS INVITED — will have treats, water fountains and more

What? You have a job?!? Come downtown after work, the party should still be going on. Check Jacksonville Bark for Your Park​ page and the Facebook event page for updates.

Celebration sponsored by Mayor Andy Ezard, The Source​, Benton & Associates​, Hamilton’s Catering​, SafeCo Donuts​, The Soap Co. Coffee House​, All Occasions Flowers & Gifts​, Jacksonville Main Street​.

NOTE — Similar events are being planned with the sponsor in other towns (they set the time and date). So we won’t know until 7/31 if we won $25,000 or are TOP DOG and get $100,000. Still, you GOTTA BELIEVE the community did it! Come join the celebration!

Wednesday July 22nd is the last day to vote for Jacksonville in the Bark for your Park contest. We are having a final daily drawing — a Grand Slam Giveaway for tickets to the Cardinals/Pirates game September 4th. These 3rd base field box tickets go for more than $450!

All you have to do is Bark on PetSafe http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and Bark again on Facebook http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh then go to the contest post on the campaign Facebook page and say when you voted before 11 pm and you’ll be entered in the drawing.

Jacksonville Bark for Your Park supporter Karen Bennett submitted this photo of Cardinal fans Zeke and Barley. 'They want a dog park to run around in and make new friends.'

Cardinal fans Zeke and Barley are back again — this time with box seats!

The contest is in the Howl at the Moon period where the vote counter is hidden. Your vote still counts, you just can’t see your vote number. Put in the time you voted (or a screenshot) to enter the contest. If you can’t vote twice, please vote once and then enter the drawing. You can only enter our drawing once. 

Tickets were paid for by folks who purchased t-shirts. Thanks to Paul of Lonergan K9 Academy for wrangling the tickets for us at a great price. See our last post for more details about past drawing sponsors.

Thanks to campaigners Stephanie Fernandes and Abbi Stevens (C&A Construction) for managing the daily drawing give-aways. 

Screen Shot 2015-07-20 at 8.01.06 AM

Jacksonville needs your votes! The point counter is hidden, and last year’s winner has started pulling for their fellow Iowa town. This $100,000 top prize can really make a difference in the community. For example we’re already trying to make plans for a special area for the visually impaired and deaf in the region to work their service dogs. PLEASE SHARE get friends to vote the NEXT 3 DAYS until the contest ends. Voting links: 1) PetSafe http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and again 2) Facebook http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh

On heednesday vote for Jacksonville in the Bark for your Park contest and you might win tickets for the Cardinals/Mets game this Sunday.

All you have to do is Bark on PetSafe http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and Bark again on Facebook http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh then go to the contest post on the campaign Facebook page and say when you voted before 11 pm and you’ll be entered in a drawing for 4 tickets for the game in St. Louis 1:15pm July 19th (Section 189/Row 13). That’s a winner!

Jacksonville Bark for Your Park supporter Karen Bennett submitted this photo of Cardinal fans Zeke and Barley. 'They want a dog park to run around in and make new friends.'

Jacksonville Bark for Your Park supporter Karen Bennett submitted this photo of Spokesdogs and Cardinal fans Zeke and Barley. ‘They want a dog park to run around in and make new friends.’

Note — the contest entered the Howl at the Moon period where the vote counter went dark 11pm Tuesday. Your vote still counts, you just can’t see your vote number. Put in the time you voted (or a screenshot) to enter the contest. If you can’t vote twice, please vote once and then enter the drawing (invite someone to join the pack and provide the missing vote).

Jacksonville leads in the contest — but we’re not letting up until the contest ends 11pm local time Wednesday July 22. Some events in this final week of the contest . . .

Cardinals tickets were paid for by Jacksonville Bark for Your Park campaigners. Thanks to the businesses and other supporters who gave prizes for our Daily Drawings . . .

Thanks to campaigners Stephanie Fernandes and Abbi Stevens (C&A Construction) for managing the daily drawing give-aways. Get background at jaxbark.com. Please contact Steve Warmowski of the Jacksonville Park Foundation if there’s an error or omission in the list of Daily Prize donors by messaging the campaign on Facebook at Jacksonville Bark for Your Park“Go crazy, folks! Go crazy!”

 

Hollywood actress and dog lover Emily Berry jumped at the chance to make a video to help her hometown win $100,000 for a new dog park. Jacksonville leads the pack in the PetSafe Bark for Your Park online contest.

Berry is most known for appearances in commercials for Geico (titled Auctioneer) and a Dirty Dancing parody for United Healthcare (Our Song). She costarred on The Neighbors and Grey’s Anatomy and has acted in film, commercials, theater and web projects. For the public service announcement she grabbed some friends and a pair of rescue dogs to get the message out that towns with dog parks have fewer dogs abandoned at shelters and fewer dogs euthanized.

berry

The video was shot beneath the foothills displaying the Hollywood sign and features dog actors Barney and Ellie Mae plus a friend who served as a third dog. “I could only handle two dogs,” Berry said. ”The dogs aren’t used to taking direction, so it was an adventure wrangling them.”

Ellie Mae was in a litter of puppies found in an abandoned house and adopted by Berry at 6 weeks. “I think she was a cheerleader in a past life, she’s a very enthusiastic dog,” Berry said. Also featured was Barney, a Lhasa Apso found on the streets at 6 months and adopted from Pasadena Humane Society by a buddy of Berry’s.

“A lot of my friends live in apartments and don’t have a place to play with their dogs,” Berry said. They like to come use her big back yard and also go to dog parks. Berry is a big supporter of dog rescues and has donated to the Protecting Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) shelter in Jacksonville. Lisa Jackson, director of PAWS, suggested Berry as the perfect person to make a video and help the community.

The video appears on contest sponsor PetSafe’s YouTube channel. A link to the video, as well as links to vote, can be found at jaxbark.com or Jacksonville Bark for Your Park on Facebook.

Steve Warmowski, president of the Jacksonville Park Foundation which is coordinating with campaigners in the contest, said it takes less than half a minute a day for dog lovers and community boosters to vote. The community currently leads the pack in the contest which runs through July 22nd.

Berry lives in Van Nuys, California, and has a second dog Bubba, a rescue she found via PetFinder. “I could only wrangle two dogs, so Bubba is not in the video. But he’s very smart so he helped me write the script,” Berry joked. “He reminds me of Morgan Freeman.”

Video link – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ep6dC7DlGWA&feature=youtu.be

Jacksonville is currently the national leader in the Bark for Your Park contest. PetSafe​ sponsors the​ contest because communities with dog parks have fewer dogs abandoned in shelters and fewer dogs euthanized. We need you to help push further ahead of the competition, and to win $100,000 for a new dog park for the community. You can help by recruiting people to the team. Like Jacksonville Bark for Your Park on Facebook and bark twice a day! 1) PetSafe http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and again 2) Facebook http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh

Emily Berry on Facebook or Emily Berry resume

Volunteers have built up great trails on the east edge of Mauvaisterre Lake in Jacksonville (On Woods Lane, first bridge south of Country Club Road). Cyclists from all over the region come ride, you should check them out, too.

Here’s a different way to enjoy the trails — at night. Rides start about an hour before sunset. The bravest riders will hang around until after the sun goes down, strap on lights and ride into the dark. Arooooooo!

Please check the Jacksonville Recreational Trails​ Facebook page before the ride to make sure they’re not too muddy. Please respect the work of volunteers and don’t rut the trails. Updates on the group’s Facebook event. No registration — no sponsor. This is a crowd-sourced event on park land.

First ride is Friday July 31st. If you can’t make it Friday, come out Saturday.

Later in the year rides can switch to Friday, or Friday and Saturday (depending on feedback). Come on out and enjoy the trails with friends. Here’s the full schedule for the year.

  • July 31-Aug 1 7pm – Alpha Dog Ride
  • Aug 28-29 7pm – Back to School
  • Sept 25-26 6pm – Harvest Moon
  • Oct 30-31 5pm – Halloween Ride (wear a costume)
  • Nov 27-28 3:30pm – Work off the Turkey Ride
Work Day Audubon Woods Lane Bike Trails Sunday 121202 TownBrook Town Brook Photos by Steve & Tiffany of Warmowski Photography http://www.warmowskiphoto.com 217.473.5581 EWRM/The Image Works

Work Day Audubon Woods Lane Bike Trails Sunday 121202 TownBrook Town Brook
Photos by Steve & Tiffany of Warmowski Photography http://www.warmowskiphoto.com 217.473.5581 EWRM/The Image Works

Edited — Ride scheduled for July 4th called off due to the wettest June in modern Illinois history. Please respect work of volunteers and don’t ride and rut muddy trails.

Press release — For Immediate Release

With a show of support from the community, Jacksonville succeeded in making it into the final round of the PetSafe Bark for Your Park Contest.

Voting starts noon Wednesday, June 17, with the top prize of $100,000 for a new dog park within reach. Go to jaxbark.com or Jacksonville Bark for Your Park on Facebook to find out how to participate and help.

“PAWS couldn’t be happier with the support everyone has given our entry in Bark for Your Park,” said the group’s founder Lisa Jackson. “Once voting resumes Wednesday we hope to have just as much support if not more. This is an amazing community and I know this is possible. Let’s get to barking and win that $100,000 prize.”

Jacksonville Mayor Andy Ezard celebrated the win of the first round of the contest. “Our community always steps up when a good project is on the line,” he said. “It’s been very obvious to me that we have many people who are dedicated to see a dog park come our way.”

“With PAWS, Scott County Dog Rescue, Dog P.E.N. and the on-line group supporting Morgan County Animal Control we have what it takes to win,” said Steve Warmowski of the Jacksonville Park Foundation. “Those interested in helping the community and dogs need to show their support and vote twice a day.”

The park foundation, PAWS, Pet Supplies Plus and others will have a series of Friday events to boost the campaign. The first is a launch at noon Friday, June 19th at the proposed site for the new dog park, 894 E. Vandalia, across from Nichols Park. People and their dogs are invited to come out and take part.

Other events include Dogs ’n Suds on Friday, June 26 at PAWS; a Bank Bark-off Friday, July 3; participation in the 4th of July Blast and parade; Smokey the Fire Dog appearance during the Morgan County Fair Friday, July 10; and a Final Push Party at Pet Supplies Plus Friday, July 17. See the website or Facebook page for updates.

Contest sponsor PetSafe​ has said they put on the contest because communities with dog parks have fewer dogs abandoned in shelters and fewer dogs euthanized. Info and links are at jaxbark.com. Voting links are 1) PetSafe http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and 2) Facebook http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh. Contest ends 11 pm July 22.

barkpark_blog

This is it! Voting in the final round of PetSafe’s Bark For Your Park contest starts noon Wednesday, and you can help Jacksonville win $100,000 for a new dog park.

The Jacksonville Park Foundation, PAWS and others are working to build community support — but this is a community-wide effort and your help is needed for Jacksonville to win. Here’s some things you can do . . .

  • Vote twice a day starting noon Wednesday June 17th. You can bark once on the web at http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and then again on Facebook at http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh.
  • Get friends to like our Jacksonville Bark for Your Park on Facebook and refer friends to our portal website jaxbark.com to learn how to vote.
  • If you run a web page or a email list, add contest info to your messaging (see end of post for sample text). Have your club, church or group get the message out.
  • Contact Production Express 217.243.4258 and they can add your logo to a template they have and make cards for you to hand out at your business. Or, go to PetSafe’s web site and get promotional graphics you can use or customize.
  • Add Bark for Your Park info to your advertising. Tell people to go to jaxbark.com to learn how to vote.
  • Have your business offer a short-term incentive to get your customers involved (idea borrowed from a winning town). Such as get us to XX,XXX votes by this day, and we’ll donate money to PAWS or do a half-price/free stuff offer. You can contact Steve Warmowski 217.245.4178 or use the contact form at the end of this post to set a target, coordinate and help spread the word.
  • Put up a banner from Lomelino Sign Co. 217.243.2444. They can use an image we sent them, or customize one of the contest templates.

Here’s some sample text . . . PetSafe​ sponsors the Bark for Your Park​ contest because communities with dog parks have fewer dogs abandoned in shelters and fewer dogs euthanized. So help Jacksonville win $100,000 by liking Jacksonville’s contest Facebook page. Info on how to vote at jaxbark.com. Bark twice a day at 1) PetSafe http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and again 2) Facebook http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh.

Don’t forget C&A Construction will donate a dollar to PAWS for every vote for Jacksonville from now until June 10th in the Bark for Your Park Contest. See full story.

Bark twice a day at 1) PetSafe http://bit.ly/1H4FII1 and
2) Facebook http://bit.ly/1KmWkhh. Get background info at jaxbark.com.

Note: above Facebook link is new and seems to make voting easier — please give feedback.

Jacksonville is holding in 10th place, here’s the numbers . . .

150526chart

Place Town 05/18/15 05/20/15 05/22/15 05/26/15
1 Watkinsville, GA 917 1249 1689 2630
2 Epworth, IA 1029 1481 1832 2477
3 LaGrange, GA 776 1144 1601 2424
4 Moore, OK 795 1221 1551 2284
5 Merrimack, NH 676 960 1225 1778
6 East Hartford CT 752 896 1109 1700
7 Fort Gratiot, MI 500 857 1158 1667
8 Barstow CA 393 760 1085 1591
9 Bryant AR 363 774 962 1341
10 Jacksonville 457 679 859 1298
11 West Winfield, NY 303 529 734 1197
12 Oswego, IL 194 547 760 1112
13 Jesup, GA 419 592 689 1012
14 Winslow, AZ 320 463 567 956
15 Stanaford, WV 253 449 596 848
Vacaville, CA 380 508 625 843
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